- Quaker Education in Baltimore and Virginia Yearly Meetings With an Account of Certain Meetings of Delaware and the Eastern Shore Affiliated With Philadelphia (review)
- Bulletin of Friends' Historical Association
- Friends Historical Association
- Volume 26, Number 1, Spring 1937
- pp. 57-58
- View Citation
- Additional Information
BOOK REVIEWS57 In 1821 "an act for the more convenient education of the poor gratis" in certain counties was passed by the Pennsylvania legislature. The so-called "infant-school movement" dealt also largely with children of the poor, with a predominant purpose of keeping very young children out of mischief ; a private school for this purpose was set up in 1827 ; the legislature took the matter up the following year, but did nothing decisive until 1834. The movement for uniting education in manual arts and agriculture with intellectual training took its inspiration from the achievements of the Swiss Fellenberg (1771-1844) at Hofwyl, near Berne. From 1831 on there were experiments in Pennsylvania, and the general plan became part of the State school law of 1834. The movement for universal free education was late in gathering headway: taxpayers resisted the burden, rich communities objected to paying for the country districts, political and religious manipulation was feared, and often parents themselves objected, since they wished their children to stay at home and work. After much campaigning and lobbying, the Free School Law of 1834 was passed; under its provisions schools were to be free, supported by public means, and governed or administered with a considerable amount of local independence. There was no provision for compulsory attendance. The law was revised in 1835, and incorporated, with further changes, in the School Code of 1836. The activities of Roberts Vaux in all these movements are recounted in detail ; and they are revealed as being of first importance. Like Benezet, Vaux was retiring; hence perhaps the fact that his real significance has been overlooked. Others, with whom he worked, and often through whom he worked, have received the credit. It is a merit of this book, interestingly written and thoroughly documented, that it shows Vaux's part in the slow coming of Pennsylvania's public-school system.T. K. B., Jr. Quaker Education in Baltimore and Virginia Yearly Meetings With an Account of Certain Meetings of Delaware and the Eastern Shore Affiliated With Philadelphia, by William C. Dunlap. Philadelphia 1936. xi+574 pp. Illustrated. ' I 'HIS HISTORY grew out of study at the University of Pennsylvania under Professor Thomas Wordy. It is based, the author tells us in his Preface, on manuscript sources, mainly the minutes of Quaker meetings , partly original letters. Contemporary newspapers were extensively consulted. Since most of the source material has never been published, the significant passages are often quoted in full. Some 300 pages are taken up with accounts of schools in thirty monthly and nine quarterly meetings ; and of Fair Hill School, founded in 1819 under the care of Baltimore Yearly Meeting. Of all these schools only one, that of Baltimore Monthly Meeting, now remains—the others have all been given up as the public schools became better and as Friends became 58 BULLETIN OF FRIENDS' HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION less concerned to give their children a guarded religious education of the peculiarly Quaker type. Additional chapters discuss educational work of Friends among the Indians and Negroes, the special subject of religious education, and rehabilitation work done in North Carolina and Tennessee. The book shows an impressive labor by Friends in the cause of education ; for while most of the schools were given up, they served the purpose of creating interest in education and paving the way for a sound system of free public schools. This book is both a source book and a narrative. It is a source book in that it makes available to later students an immense quantity of hitherto inaccessible data, with references to more that can be had—the bibliography and index are veritable mines of concrete information— ; it is a narrative, and a history, in that it organizes the facts chosen into an orderly presentation of a large and complicated subject. Much of interest in the life of the monthly meetings themselves is incidentally portrayed as their educational ventures are recounted.T. K. B., Jr. South After Gettysburg. Letters of Cornelia Hancock from the Army of the Potomac 1863-1865. Edited by Henrietta Stratton Jaquette. Philadelphia , University of Pennsylvania Press, 1937. xiii+173 pp. $2.00. Illustrated. ' I ?? FOUR pages of introduction written by the...